The new novel Leia: Princess of Alderaan by Claudia Gray includes a passage that heavily implies the character Amilyn Holdo (played by Laura Dern in The Last Jedi) is bisexual, which would make her the first openly LGBT individual seen onscreen in a Star Wars film. Diversity and representation is a hot button topic in the film industry these days, and Lucasfilm has been at the forefront of promoting it in big budget tentpoles. Their first two Star Wars movies in the Disney era - The Force Awakens and Rogue One - have starred female protagonists and given key roles to actors like John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Diego Luna and Donnie Yen. One area where the galaxy far, far away has been lacking in some eyes, however, is highlighting LGBT characters.
Those who have been involved in making the modern films - like Episode VII helmsman J.J. Abrams - have expressed their interest in seeing an LGBT figure in the Star Wars universe, and while some have been shown in other corners of franchise canon (such as the novels), none have been part of the movies yet. That is seemingly set to change this December with the release of The Last Jedi, which marks the big screen debut of the Resistance's Vice Admiral Holdo.
In the book (which is set prior to the events of A New Hope), there is a moment where Leia and Holdo are having a conversation, joking about the possibility of an interspecies relationship:
"A pair of pretty dark eyes." Then Amilyn thought about that for a moment. "Or more than a pair, if you're into Grans. Or Aqualish, or Talz. Or even - "
"That's all right! Leia said through laughter. "It's just humanoid males for me."
"Really? That feels so limiting."
"Thank goodness it's a big galaxy."
It's worth pointing out the novel does not explicitly state Holdo is bisexual, but her back-and-forth with Leia certainly suggests it. The fact she sees romances with "just humanoid males" as limiting indicates Amilyn would be open to being with another woman if the right opportunity presented itself. Throughout the Star Wars galaxy, there are more than a few alien creatures that are humanoid in appearance (going by that term's textbook definition) so the Princess might be interested in dating a non-human. Holdo's comments are open for interpretation until further clarification is provided, but she looks to be saying restricting oneself to humanoid men isn't much fun, and Leia should look to be a little more adventurous in her pursuits (and not just falling for the bad boy, Han Solo).
How this revelation factors into the story of The Last Jedi remains to be seen, as very little details about Holdo are known at this juncture. A good comparison here would be Star Trek Beyond, which established Sulu was gay in the Kelvin Timeline in a tasteful manner that felt natural. Fans shouldn't expect Amilyn's sexuality to be a crucial story component, but if it's alluded to in some way (either in a line of dialogue or an interaction with a wife/girlfriend), it would make many viewers very happy as Star Wars turns a new corner.
Source: Leia: Princess of Alderaan
- Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017
- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: Episode IX (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019